Court dismisses DA’s constitutional challegne against cadre deployment – ANC

Application brought by the opposition was both legally unsound as well as hypocritical

Court dismisses DA’s case on cadre deployment – ANC releases records in the public interest

21 February 2024

The African National Congress (ANC) welcomes the judgment by the High Court Gauteng dismissing, with costs, the application by the Democratic Alliance to have the ANC's cadre development policy and deployment strategy declared unconstitutional.

The application brought by the DA was both legally unsound as well as hypocritical.

We reiterate the ANC position presented by President Cyril Ramaphosa to the Judicial Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of State Capture (Zondo Commission) that:

It is the ANC s view that the practice of cadre deployment should not be inconsistent with the principles of fairness, transparency and merit in the appointment of individuals to public entities.

Cadre deployment cannot be faulted in principle; it is a common feature of democratic practice around the world. But we would concede that there are weaknesses in its practical implementation that make the case for greater clarity, both within political parties and the state, " he said.

And also that: "The ANC 54th National Conference recognised this problem and resolved that 'the merit principle' must apply in the deployment to senior appointments, based on legislated prescripts and in line with the minimum competency standards, " he said.

These positions are vindicated in the Gauteng Hight Court's judgment, where it states that:

"It follows that there is nothing unconstitutional about a political party influencing the policy direction of a government, including the appointment of senior personnel to public service, so long as the public service is protected against being misused for partisan purposes."

Accordingly in pursuit of building a united, non-racial, non-sexist, democratic and prosperous society, the ANC will continue implementing its cadre development policy and deployment strategy to ensure that individuals with impressive qualifications, experience, and credentials are deployed to build a better life for all South Africans.

The ANC has complied with the Court order that it hand over records of its National Deployment Committee to Dr Leon Schreiber. The relevant documents were emailed to Dr Schreiber's.

The ANC remains steadfast in its respect for the Constitution and the laws of the Republic. The rule of law is a foundation stone of the National Democratic Society that we seek to build by working together with all South Africans.

We note with concern that despite the fact that these records were applied for by Dr Shreiber in his capacity as a Member of Parliament and that Court explicitly ruled that the DA was not entitled to the documents, they are now being released publicly, in a piecemeal and distorted manner.

This is a clear abuse of the provisions of the Promotion of Access to Information Act, which seeks to give effect to the right to information enshrined in our Constitution.

Accordingly, in the interests of transparency, accountability and informed public debate on cadre development and deployment by all parties, we are releasing all the above records on the ANC website today.

The records are currently being uploaded and can be accessed as follows:

We call upon all political parties, including the Democratic Alliance, to do likewise.

The Secretary General, Comrade Fikile Mbalula, will hold press conference tomorrow to provide further information on the process. Details of the press conference will follow.

Issued by Mahlengi Bhengi-Motsiri, National Spokesperson, ANC, 21 February 2024